Citigroup announced Wednesday that its earnings and revenue easily topped analysts’ forecasts. Fraser credited the rebounding economy for the bank’s solid results. Shares of Citigroup (C) were up slightly following the report.
“The pace of the global recovery is exceeding earlier expectations and with it, consumer and corporate confidence is rising. We saw this across our businesses,” Fraser said in the release, noting that Citi’s investment banking unit posted a strong quarter and that the bank also benefited from “markedly increased spending” from its credit card customers.
Citi, like rivals JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Bank of America (BAC) and other banks, also released some of its reserves for bad loans, a sign that the bank feels consumer credit quality is increasing following last year’s Covid-related economic downturn.
“While we have to be mindful of the unevenness in the recovery globally, we are optimistic about the momentum ahead,” Fraser added.
Still, Citi is lagging its big bank brethren in one regard. The company held its dividend steady following the most recent Federal Reserve stress tests. Most other top banks boosted their payouts to shareholders.